Friend of suicidal wants to know how to advise...

Discussion in 'Suicidal Thoughts and Feelings' started by arete, Aug 30, 2008.

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  1. arete

    arete Member

    please see above message, thanks
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 30, 2008
  2. arete

    arete Member

    Hi forum,

    I have an acquaintance who's suicidal, but we're not close and she lives somewhat far away, so I can't exactly provide a lot of support. She described to me her situation in an email and it seems pretty bleak. I would like to know what others on this forum think.

    My friend is 32, female, and unemployed. Despite having a good education (graduate degree, top schools), she's had a difficult time finding steady employment for the past 7 years, due to social anxiety, lack of social skills, and taking the wrong career path after college. She recently lost her job and moved out of an apartment she could no long afford. Currently she's living off of a very small amount of savings which she says will run out in a few month's time, is residing in a residence hotel, and has no job prospects or people she can contact. She doesn't have any friends (aside from old college acquaintances, myself included) and has trouble getting along with people; there is no one she talks to in person on a regular basis. She has not had friends for over 10 years, does everything alone, and lives a very reclusive and solitary life. She's also distant from her family, who's treated her poorly in the past and so she prefers not to deal with. She doesn't date or find herself attractive enough to date. She rarely leaves her very small hotel room, and when she does, finds it very painful to do so. She has been depressed and socially anxious for the past 10 years or so and has met with many doctors and therapists, none of which have helped in the long-term.

    How would you begin to speak with someone in this situation? Her circumstances sound very bleak to me, and I'm not sure of what she should do.

    Any help would be much appreciated.
  3. Austere Night

    Austere Night Well-Known Member

    Support groups?
  4. monkeypunchluff

    monkeypunchluff Well-Known Member

    You have many options.

    A suicide hot-line would, in my opinion, be the best (in a short period of time). They can help her, and also contact EMS if it gets bad. You might have to call them if you fear for her safety.

    Personally, I would drive over. A lot of people, when they're in bad shape, really need someone to take a huge step and go help them. This does depend on how far away you are.

    I would try to keep her on the phone if possible, letting her know you're there for her. It might help for you to find support for yourself, so you don't get overwhelmed.

    Hopefully the more senior members can give you more helpful advice.

    For her:
    She's very young, and has her life ahead of her!

    Even if she doesn't have any job prospects, there are places you can go to help you find work (forgot the name at the moment). You can also always get work for minimum wage, while you reestablish yourself and build up your resume through classes at a community college.

    It's important she seeks help from a health care professional. There are also peer support groups where she can build a social network in an non-judgmental environment.

    Depending on her family, there might be those still there who care and will treat her fairly. I wouldn't push her towards them though, if they've treated her badly in the past, pushing her towards them might be a harmful action on your part.

    Again, seeing a therapist can help her work past self-esteem issues, and also a social-anxiety disorder. It's helpful if someone she knows brings her to these sessions, or takes an effort in her recovery. It will make it easier for her to go outside the apartment.

    I wish her, and you, the best of luck!

    {posted on the one below this?}

    I'm wondering why the therapy didn't help in the long-term. It could be that she simply doesn't have the social support network to rely on (therapy alone doesn't always help). I think that a support group would be a very important thing to get her into. Finding the right therapist, who invests themselves in their patient also is important (a lot of jerks out for a paycheck).
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 30, 2008
  5. Stranger1

    Stranger1 Forum Buddy & Antiquities Friend

    I would be very careful joing support groups!! I tried two and had bad experience with both of them. The second one set me back about six months in my therapy. I never went back to the groups because of the trust issues. Now therapy I agree with that 100%. It took me a few trys to find Gina. She is great. I can't say it enough times. If you are in therapy then good for you, if not please find one because they are important to gain better health. Tell your friend about the SF. We will gladly give her moral support and advice. No one here sits in judgement of others. This is a caring bunch of individuals. Who have similar thoughts and actions...Good Luck...:chopper:...
  6. Dave_N

    Dave_N Guest

    Hi arete. I think that you should tell your friend about Suicide Forum. There are many members here that in a very similar situation as her, with social anxiety etc. You are a good friend for caring about her well being. :smile:
  7. arete

    arete Member

    Thanks for your responses. I believe my friend/acquaintance is still suicidal, and I don't know how to advise her. She can't find a job or an apartment, has no friends, is distant from her family, and has very bad social anxiety and poor social skills. She has no one on whom she can rely for longer-term financial support, and does not have medical insurance and cannot afford medical care or seeing a therapist. Her money is soon going to run out. She doesn't want to live if it means being homeless and alone. Is there anything you would suggest she do?
  8. ConsolationPrizeFighter

    ConsolationPrizeFighter Well-Known Member

  9. Dave_N

    Dave_N Guest

    Is there any way that your friend can move in with you arete? She sounds like she really needs help and it would be sad if you lost her.
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